While Greg wasn't talking about the userspace, there are a different set of issues there. The primary issue is that while the pieces are there, the userspace does not seem to be run with community input in mind. There is a bug tracking system, and a GIT repository, but there the similarities end. Perhaps the phone manufacturers have a closer pipeline, but that's not even clear.
The bug tracking system uses "starring" issues as a way of showing the most popularly requested changes. Unfortunately, it seems to mix feature requests with bugs, and the way either get assigned to people is obscure at best.
The GIT repository seems to be a periodic dump of some other repository - whenever there is a release, there is a big changeset introduced. Little or none of the intermediate changes from the previous releases are visible, which makes it hard to understand why certain changes were made.
One bug I found in the calendar program had been reported by other people. I looked at the source, found someone added a bunch of code which seems to be the source of the problem, and added that information to the bug. But, without changelogs, it was not clear why that section of apparently completely unnecessary code was added. I can understand that Google may not want to expose the email addresses of their developers to the outside world, nor flood them with complaints of inadequate copy-paste support. But there needs to be some compromise way of screening the "yeah, I have that problem too" type of email from getting to Google developers, while still allowing the pearls to flow through.